Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Civil and Criminal Contempt

There are two kinds of contempt in Mississippi:  (1)  civil contempt and (2)  criminal contempt.  Each one has different evidentiary burdens.  One issue I see is that technically most contempt petitions in chancery are for civil contempt as opposed to criminal contempt.  I think in certain circumstances, a petition for criminal contempt may be appropriate.  One has to remember though that this includes a 5th amendment claim by the opposing party where in the criminal context this cannot be held against a party but can be used to draw an inference in the civil context. 

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